Rank and file
DCTF's EJ Holland ranks the 2013 recruiting classes in Texas as they stand now.
With the 2012 Texas high school football season already half-done, DCTF's EJ Holland ranks the top six 2013 recruiting classes in Texas as they stand now. Nos. 7-12 will be posted next week.
The Skinny: As always, Texas has landed a slew of talented players from across the state. The Longhorns currently have 15 commits and are still looking to add more top-notch prospects. This is easily a top-10 class at the moment and may very well be a top-5 class by National Signing Day.
Best Commit: DT A’Shawn Robinson, Arlington Heights (6-5, 305)- One of top three defensive tackles in the nation, Robinson is expected to be a force in the trenches and could start from Day 1 on a defense that could really use him right now.
Runner Up: WR Jake Oliver, Jesuit (6-4, 195) - The popular pick may be quarterback Tyrone Swoopes, but how about some love for Oliver. After all, he did just break Jordan Shipley’s record for most career receptions.
Hidden Gem: ATH Chevoski Collins (5-11, 185)- He was definitely not under recruited by any means, but Collins fits the mold because he can make an impact at a variety of different positions.
2. Texas A&M
The Skinny: Trust me, it was extremely difficult not to put Texas A&M ahead of Texas. With a whopping 28 commits, this class is loaded from top to better. There are some serious freaks on both sides of the ball including Cedar Hill’s LaQuivionte Gonzalez as well as two top tier quarterbacks in Southlake Carroll’s Kenny Hill and St. Pius X’s Kohl Stewart.
Best Commit: QB Kenny Hill, Southlake Carroll (6-1,205)- Might be somewhat of a reach, but Hill is a phenomenal athlete and leader. He can make plays with both his arm and legs and is simply a proven leader. He will have some stiff competition with Stewart also being in the same class, but Hill is a better fit for the Aggies and there is no doubt in my mind that he will be a star in College Station.
Runner Up- OL Ishmael Wilson, Bishop Dunne (6-5, 280)- A man among boys, Wilson is consistently ranked as one of the top-25 players in the state overall. He is listed as a guard but may end up as a tackle at the next level thanks to his impressive frame and athleticism.
Hidden Gem- DE Jordan Points, Rockwall-Heath (6-4, 255)- Teammate and fellow commit Jay Arnold may get all the headlines, but Points is one heck of a defensive end. His motor never stops, and he’s a relentless pass rusher, recording 12 sacks as junior last season.
The skinny: Athleticism. That’s the perfect word to describe Baylor’s class, which currently has 18 commits. The Bears just keep attracting top Texas talent and will continue to be extremely competitive in the Big 12. But this class could really do something special.
Best Commit: WR Robbie Rhodes, Fort Worth Southwest (6-1, 185)- As stated above, it’s all about athleticism with Rhodes. He will certainly be able to stretch the field at the next level and just plays so smoothly on the outside. Last season, Rhodes was a machine, catching 47 passes for 1,315 yards and 21 touchdowns.
Runner Up: QB Chris Johnson, Bryan (6-5, 195)- Johnson and Rhodes could be a lethal connection in the near future. Johnson probably won’t be the next RG3 but if he does improve his accuracy and touch, he will be a very good player for the Bears. The potential there, but he must fill it.
Hidden Gem: ATH Wesley Harris, Fort Worth Southwest (6-1, 175)- Rhodes is the more touted of the two, but Harris will make a name for himself at Baylor when it’s all said and. Like his teammate, Harris is just an athlete but will more than likely end up as a cornerback.
4. Texas Tech
The Skinny: The Red Raiders fell just behind Baylor but have a nice crop of athletes including quite a few JUCO players. Texas Tech has found their future signal caller and added some defensive studs that could really help this improving defense.
Best Commit: WR Devin Lauderdale, Houston Bellaire (5-11, 170)- Lauderdale held offers from almost everywhere but will be a great fit in Texas Tech’s explosive offense. With blazing speed, he averaged 30.4 yards per reception last season, Lauderdale is poised to put up big numbers for the Red Raiders.
Runner Up: QB Davis Webb, Prosper (6-4, 195)- It’s surprising Webb didn’t pick up at least a few more big-time offers, but that doesn’t matter. Webb has the arm strength and pocket presence to excel in Lubbock. He will, however, need a couple of years to develop.
Hidden Gem: ATH Caleb Woodward, Leander (6-1, 190)- Only other offer came from Texas State, but Woodward has an athletic build and could turn out to be an explosive wide out along with Lauderdale and Whitehouse’s Dylan Cantrell.
The skinny: With 14 commits, TCU still has some room to work with in this class. Some skill positions are still needed, and the Horned Frogs have yet to land a true headliner. But knowing Gary Patterson, this class will jump up a few spots before National Signing Day.
Best Commit: S George Baltimore, Mansfield (6-0, 205)- Baltimore is an extremely athletic safety that isn’t afraid to get physical. He can certainly deliver a blow, making him an ideal addition for an already aggressive TCU defense.
Runner Up: DE Bryson Henderson, Mansfield Summit (6-4, 245)- Staying on the defensive side of the ball, Henderson is a versatile defensive lineman that plays tackle in high school but will slide out to defensive end at TCU. He had 75 tackles and 10 sacks last season.
Hidden Gem: TE Bryson Burtnett, Springtown (6-5, 225)- There is no question Charlie Reid is the top tight end in this class, but Burtnett is also a solid commit and a big target. His only other offers were from Rice and Texas State.
The skinny: Houston still has plenty of room in this class so expect numerous commits in the next few months. Still all 12 of the Cougar verbal pledges are solid including a variety of explosive offensive playmakers. Houston’s primary focus heading forward should be on the defensive side of the ball.
Best Commit: ATH Greg Ward, Tyler John Tyler (6-0, 165)- For some reason, Ward just can’t seem to pick up BCS offers but quite frankly, he’s a phenomenal athlete that has broken numerous records at Tyler John Tyler. Last season he accumulated almost 5,000 yards of total offense and 50 touchdowns while playing quarterback. Ward will be a slot receiver at Houston.
Runner Up: RB Joseph Glenn, Giddings (5-10, 200)- Has all the physical tools to be a perfect fit in Houston’s offensive scheme. Glenn has 4.47 speed and can also be a pass catching option out of the backfield. He broke as a sophomore at Giddings and had over 1,500 yards rushing as a junior.
Hidden Gem: DE Michael Jolivet, Navarro J.C. (6-4, 240)- After giving up 72 points to SMU, it’s clear Houston needs some immediate help on defense. Insert Jolivet. This big defensive has experience and can make an immediate impact.
Check TexasFootball.com next week for Nos. 7-12 in EJ Holland's recruiting rankings.
E.J. Holland is a special contributor to Dave Campbell's Texas Football and TexasFootball.com.